Google Pixel 7 Pro Review
The Pixel 7 Pro is far from Google’s second smartphone, but it represents the company’s sophomore release since it swung more seriously into the high-end handset arena. The $899 price hasn’t changed, but this phone offers a lot more than the already impressive Pixel 6 Pro of last year.
The Google Pixel 7 Pro introduces an even smarter Tensor G2 processor, a longer 5x telephoto camera with up to 30x digital zoom, Face Unlock, longer battery life, and faster charging. There’s a lot to love about the Pixel 7 Pro and it feels like the best and most uncompromising Android phone yet.
Google Pixel 7 Pro – Design and Features
There are only two things that have physically changed about the Pixel 7 Pro compared to its predecessor. It’s 0.1 inches shorter so it’s ever so slightly less gargantuanly tall and more pocketable.
The second most obvious difference is the glass rear camera bar has been replaced by one made of polished aluminum. It makes the phone look a little less distinct, but the shiny metal sheen definitely adds to its high-end appearance – especially so with the brass and gray color scheme of the hazel model I have.
As for changes you can’t spot so easily, the screen hits a higher maximum brightness of 1,500 nits, making it easier to see outside. That’s a big jump up from the Pixel 6 Pro’s 800-nit display, and I can definitely see things better in sunny daylight than with Google’s previous handset.
The screen here also still refreshes at up to 120Hz, and thankfully Android 12 adds some smoother animations to keep up with it.
Google Pixel 7 Pro – Gaming and Performance
The Pixel 7 Pro comes rocking Google’s second-generation Tensor G2 processor. It definitely provides some added oomph to the phone’s performance, but it’s not as noticeable with day-to-day operation.
The Tensor G2 flexes its muscle most by halving the amount of time it takes to take a night sight photo, meaning you don’t have to wait as long for images to process. The same goes for basically any photo you take – the final HDR rendering appears just as you preview it instead of having to wait a moment or two for it to process.
The Tensor G2 also powers some even more impressive speech recognition features. Namely, you can have Google Assistant call and talk to customer service at places like Costco, Enterprise Rent-A-Car, and Home Depot while you select from on-screen options what you want it to say for you. Google plans to add support for even more service numbers, so hopefully being on hold with customer service will be a thing of the past. You can also use your voice to text in three new languages – Spanish, French, and Italian – including the ability to add emojis.
Google Pixel 7 Pro – Camera
The most impressive thing about the Google Pixel 7 Pro is by far its new cameras. The telephoto camera has seen the most attention, with its 4x zoom lens upgraded to 5x – and that’s all done optically by the way. This new lens is also backed by the same 48MP sensor, so it can digitally crop in with a feature Google calls Super Res Zoom.
Even more interesting, if you take a photo between 2.5x and 5x, the Pixel 7 Pro will take images from its main and telephoto camera and combine them for a sharper and more detailed image. The images at 5x are astonishingly sharp to the point where I feel this phone’s telephoto camera can replace my actual mirrorless camera with a telephoto lens.
What’s more, the reach of Super Res Zoom has been extended from 20x to 30x. It’s not quite to the absurd levels of Samsung’s 100x Space Zoom on the Galaxy S22 Ultra, but Google’s results are arguably better across its more limited range. The high zoom factor images from the Pixel 7 Pro are clearly sharper and less grainy.
As for the main camera, Google has stuck to the same 50MP sensor, but introduced a 2x digital zoom just like the iPhone 14 Pro. It’s a handy feature for when you don’t need a 5x amount of magnification, but images do look a little less detailed.
The ultrawide camera, meanwhile, has an upgraded 125-degree field of view so you can capture even wider vistas and taller buildings in your frame. The ultrawide camera also has a new passable macro mode, but similar to Apple’s first implementation of it, it’s all automatic and can cause your phone to randomly switch from the main wide camera to the telephoto camera when you get close to a subject. I’m hoping Google will implement some kind of manual option for the macro camera with an upcoming update.
Google Pixel 7 Pro – Battery Life
The Google Pixel 7 Pro offers astounding battery life largely thanks to its 5000mAh battery. Most days I find myself with 30% or more battery life remaining, and that’s with heavy use. Google has also boosted the wired and wireless fast charging speeds to 30W. Physically plugging in the phone for 15 minutes gave me back 24% battery charge and after 30 minutes I was nearly up to a half tank with 48%.
Unfortunately, as of this writing, I did not have a 30W wireless charger to test the maximum wireless charging speeds of the Google Pixel 7 Pro.
This story originally appeared on: IGN - Author:Kevin Lee